Kurdish Rebel Attack Kills 24 Turkish Soldiers

Posted October 19th, 2011 at 4:05 am (UTC-5)
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Kurdish rebels are reported to have killed 24 Turkish soldiers and wounded 18 others near Turkey's border with Iraq, in the deadliest such attack in years.

Reports say rebels from the Kurdistan Workers Party opened fire on military outposts in Cukurca and Yuksekova, in southeastern Turkey's Hakkari province.

A pro-Kurdish news agency said Turkish military forces crossed into Iraq to pursue Kurdish rebels in response to the attack. Turkish military officials did not immediately comment on the report.

The PKK has escalated attacks against Turkish targets in recent weeks. Turkish forces have responded by increasing the number of airstrikes against suspected rebel bases in northern Iraq. In August, Turkey's military said it killed as many as 160 Kurdish rebels in air and artillery strikes across the border.

Kurdish rebels have waged a campaign for autonomy in Turkey's largely Kurdish southeast since 1984. The conflict has killed more than 40,000 people.

The PKK is considered a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States and European Union.